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NRRA Intelligent Construction Technologies Team

MnROAD | NRRA | Structure & Teams | ICT Team

Evaluation of Levels 3-4 Intelligent Compaction Measurement Values (ICMV) for Soils Subgrade and Aggregate Subbase Compaction

Status: Complete
MnDOT Contract #: 1034039
Start Date: September 30, 2021
Completion Date: March 31, 2023


This project will conduct evaluation of advanced Intelligent Compaction Measurement Values (ICMV). Intelligent Compaction (IC) is a roller-based innovative technology that provides real time compaction monitoring and control. IC can be used to monitor roller passes, asphalt surface temperatures, machine vibration frequencies/amplitudes, and stiffness related values of compacted materials. The latter uses an accelerometer-based technology to estimate the level of compaction and calculate an ICMV.

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) research project "DTFH6 l-07-R-00032: Accelerated Implementation of Intelligent Compaction Technology for Embankment Subgrade Soils, Aggregate Base, and Asphalt Pavement Materials" is part of the blueprint for the FHWA IC strategic plan, and was initiated under Transportation Pooled Fund (TPF) Solicitation No. 954. This TPF includes twelve participating state Departments of Transportations (DOTs), including: Minnesota, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Maryland, Mississippi, North Dakota, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin. The project team produced an IC Road Map to overcome gaps and reduce barriers. The recent FHWA Tech Brief (FHWA HIF-17-046) " ICMV - A Road Map," provides the most comprehensive description and classification of the ICMV. The classification is based on three criteria: (1) goodness of correlation between ICMV and conventional spot tests, (2) capability of obtaining ICMVs towards the end of compaction, and (3) whether ICMV can be used to measure layer-specific mechanical properties.

Based on the five levels of ICMV in the FHWA Tech Brief, the current implementation of ICMV in the US has been limited to Level 1 (e.g., Compaction Meter Value [CMV], Hamm Measurement Value [HMV], Compaction Control Value [CCV]) and Level 2 (e.g., Machine Drive Power [MDP). These Level 1 and Level 2 lCMVs have failed to meet the three criteria stated above. This limits ICMV's applications and acceptance by state agencies and industry, which then results in IC implementation being limited to monitoring roller passes and asphalt surface temperature. In order to achieve the full potential of IC technology, Level 3+ ICMVs are needed to meet the three criteria stated above. The implementation of Level 3+ ICMV also lays the foundation for future IC certification programs for compaction acceptance and true auto-feedback controls.

The research and implementation project described in this contract aligns well with the National Road Research Alliance (NRRA), which is helping the US advance pavement technologies and implementation. This contract will evaluate Level 3-4 ICMVs for soils subgrade and aggregate subbase compaction to take IC to the next level. There is an immediate need to further develop IC both nationally and on a local level. State research personnel will use the tools delivered under this contract to further develop and refine draft specifications.


Task 1 Project Management

  • Coordinate and conduct a kick-off meeting for NRRA, research team, contractor(s), and IC vendors.
  • Identify Level 3/4 ICMV solutions and Level 1/2 solutions for comparison and to refine project for selected test sites.
  • Produce quarterly progress reports to present the actual progress of this study and any issues incurred and corresponding solutions.
  • Schedule and attend up to two update meetings, as needed.

Deliverable: One kick-off meeting minutes. Five Quarterly progress reports. Oral report and presentation on the progress and results from this project at two NRRA meetings.

Task 2: Level 3-4 ICMV Integration

  • Coordinate with the JC vendors to proceed with legal and technical procedures to integrate their IC systems with Level-4 ICMVs. The time required for this step will depend on the complexity of legal and technical process.

Deliverable: Integrated Level 3-4 JCMY systems
Date due: June 30, 2022

Task 3: Roller Instrumentation and Field Tests

  • 3.1 Coordinate with the JC vendors to instrument Level 3/4 ICMV systems and Level 1/2 system on a single-drum IC roller.
  • 3.2 Instrument CHRP 24-45 IC components on the same roller.
  • 3.3 Conduct field evaluation tests with the above IC systems and conventional spot tests at MnROAD and/or selected test site(s) per the Experimental Plan.

Deliverable: Field test data
Date due: September 30, 2022

Task 4: Data Analysis and Report

  • 4.1 Perform data analysis and evaluation on the lCMV systems and produce a final report that includes the thorough evaluation of the Level 3-4 ICMY and a framework for future TC certification programs.

Deliverable: Final report
Date due: March 30, 2023

Project team

Email the Project Team
Principal Investigator: George Chang, The Transtec Group
Co-Investigators: Soheil Nazarian, UTEP and Amanda Gilliland, The Transtec Group
Technical Liaison: John Siekmeier, MnDOT
Project Technical Advisory Panel (TAP):

  • Lydia Brownell, MoDOT
  • Bryan Downing, CAT
  • Erv Dukatz, Flyereld Consulting
  • Rebecca Embacher, MnDOT
  • Todd Mansell, CAT
  • Jordan Nehls, NDDOT
  • Nick Oetken, CAT
  • Supraja Reddy, Illinois Tollway
  • David Shelstad, MOBA
  • John Siekmeier, MnDOT (TL)
  • Raul Velasquez, MnDOT

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